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Proofs  that  the  art  of  Dentistry  was  practised  by 
the  Etruscans,  have  been  found  at  different  places,  and 
that  they  had  arrived  at  considerable  skill,  is  very 

In  the  Etruscan  Museum  in  Florence  there  are  the 
crowns  of  eleven  teeth,  one  canine  and  ten  molars ; 
they  are  completely  hollowed  out  (the  enamel  only  re- 
maining, and  this  is  perfect) ;  not  a  particle  of  the  den- 
tine, excepting  in  two,  has  been  left.  They  appear  as 
if  they  had   been   prepared    to  crown  broken   teeth  or 

—  4  — 
roots;  they  are  greenish  in  colour  as  if  they  had  been 
in  contact  with  bronze. 

In  Florence,  in  the  writer's  possession,  there  exists 
an  Etruscan  skull,  in  the  under  jaw  of  which  a  gold 
band  or  ribbon  has  been  interlaced  in  and  about  the 
incisors,  embracing  the  canines  and  bicuspids.  This  pro- 
bably was  done  for  the  purpose  of  supporting  some 
of  the  teeth  when  they  had  been  loosened. 

At  Marzabotto,  near  Bologna,  in  the  collection  of 
Count  Pompeo  Aria,  there  is  a  deciduous  incisor  tooth 
mounted  exquisitely  in  gold;  in  this  there  is  a  loop, 
through  which  a  cord  was  passed,  so  that  it  could  be 
worn  as  an  ornament. 

—  5  - 
An  artificial  tooth  attached  by  gold  wire  was  found 
in   an   Etruscan    skull,  at  Marzabotto   also.     This  skull 
was  sent  with  other  Etruscan  objects  to  a  foreign  scien- 
tific society,  but  it  was  never  returned  to  Count  i^ria. 

In  the  National  Museum  at  Rome  at  the  Villa  G-iulia, 
there  is  an  Etruscan  skull  which  has  a  small  denture  in 
gold.  There  is  a  space  which  probably  held  a  false 
tooth  ;  the  rivet  passing  from  side  to  side  would  indi- 
cate that  the  tooth  was  held  there  in  place  by  it. 

At  Corneto,  an  Etruscan  city  some  40  miles  from 
Eome,  in  the  two  Museums  existing  there,  are  four  spe- 
cimens of  Etruscan  dentures  carrying  artificial  teeth  : 
three  for  the  upper  jaw  and  one  for  the  lower. 

-  6  — 
They  all  are  made   witli  bands,  without  any  palate 
and  resemble  the  «  bridge  work  »  of  these  days. 

The  principal  one  is  an  upper  denture  in  gold,  with 
eight  apertures  or  rings.  Five  of  these  passed  around 
teeth  which  were  standing  during  the  life  of  the  person 
who  wore  them. 

Two  of  these,  the  right  upper  canine  and  the  right 
upper  lateral,  are  still  remaining  in  their  rings  or  bands. 

These  bands  extend  from  the  right  upper  canine  to 
the  first  left  upper  molar. 

The  two  front  upper  incisors  and  the  first  upper 
left  bicuspid  were  false  teeth. 

Owing  to  the  incrustation  of  "  tufo,"  earth,  tartar,  or 
probably  of  all  combined  about  the  two  front  upper 
incisors,  and  especially  on  their  base  or  on  that  part 
which  rested  on  the  gum,  it  was  very  difficult  to  judge 
of  what  they  were  composed. 

They,  apparenth^,  were  carved  out  of  one  piece  of 

It  may  be  stone,  pottery,  a  fish's  tooth,  or  a  piece 
of  enamel  of  a  large  animal's  tooth. 

—  7  — 

They  do  not  seem  to  be  human  teeth. 

The  form  has  been  given  somewhat  ronghly. 

They  were  rivetted  from  front  to  back  with  two  ri- 
vets into  the  gold  ring  around  them. 

The  ring  which  had  served  to  occupy  the  space  of 
the  left  upper  bicuspid  had  evidently  supported  a  false 
tooth.  This  had  disappeared,  but  the  rivet  of  gold  wire 
which  passes  from  front  to  back  shews  evidently  what 
purpose  it  had  served. 

The  piece  terminates  with  a  ring  which  encircled 
the  first  left  upper  molar. 

It  is  evident  that  one  of  the  bicuspids  had  been  lost 
during  the  life  of  the  individual,  for  some  time  before 
the  denture  had  been  made.     The  space  had  closed  up. 

The  denture  is  of  very  excellent  gold;  it  is  proba- 
bly nearly  pure  in  quality,  rather  thick,  and  made 
strongly;  the  workmanship  is  very  good,  and  the  plate 
has  been  carefully  and  nicely  finished;  no  file  marks 
are  apparent:  all  is  smooth  and  artistically  done. 

The  rings  or  bands  are  joined  by  solder,  a  solder  so 
good  that  its  colour,  even  after  it  has  been  under  ground 
for  so  many  centuries,  probably  twenty  five  or  thirty, 
is  equal  to  that  of  the  other  parts  of  the  plate.  —  Even 
with  a  good  lens  it  is  impossible  to  detect  any  diffe- 
rence of  colour,  or  any  flaw  of  any  description. 

In  tlie  Stanza  Ottava,  in  tlie  same  Musenm  at  Cor- 
neto,  there  is  another  gold  denture  for  the  under  jaw. 
It  was  made  to  embrace  five  teeth :  two  of  these  were 
the  false  teeth,  one  of  them  an  incisor ;  a  human  tooth 
is  still  in  position.  The  other  is  missing.  The  gold 
rivets  remain. 

The  tooth  fixed  with  a  rivet  has  its  root  filed  quite 

There  are  four  divisions  and  the  soldering  is  here 
also  exceedingly  good. 

The  gold  bands  are  thick  and  strong  and  appear  to 
be  almost  pure. 

In  the  Palazzo  Bruschi,  also  at  Corneto,  there  are 
two  other  dentures,  one  to  hold  two  upper  front  false 
teeth  with  rings  around  three  teeth,  which  served  to  hold 
and  sustain  them  in  the  mouth.  These  three  teeth  are 
still  inside  the  band  or  rings  which  held  them  du- 
ring life. 

\[if  11 

—  9  — 

The  other  small  denture  has  three  teeth  clasped 
and  one  empty  space  where  the  false  tooth  was  at- 

It  is  made  in  gold  bands  with  rivets  of  gold ;  the 
union  of  the  different  rings  had  been  brought  about 
by  the  same  admirable  soldering. 



VIA   PAENZA,    60. 


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